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H.R. 724 Federally Criminalizes Animal Abuse

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Have you ever been online, heard a terrible story about an animal heartlessly abused, and thought to yourself, "why don't we do something about it?" Good news! The federal U.S. government has done something with the signing of the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act (PACT) into law.

But surely animal cruelty has always been illegal, right? Not federally. This act specifically criminalizes acts of cruelty against animals as a felony, and punishable under federal law. That means that an abusers crime could be recognized under both state AND federal law, compounding the consequences. To be exact, the law states that "...conduct in which one or more living non-human mammals, birds, reptiles, or amphibians is purposely crushed, burned, drowned, suffocated, impaled, or otherwise subjected to serious bodily injury" is now a federal violation.

Does that include hunting or ranching? Nope! The law makes specific exceptions, including normal veterinary care, agricultural practice, scientific or medical research, hunting, euthanasia, and self defense are all permissible. It is not allowable, however, to create or distribute, market, or even advertise an "animal crush video," so it's not just about hurting animals yourself.

Hopefully the law, called Public Law 116-72 as of November 25, will make more people think twice before harming an animal, or supporting the people who do!

Photo: Pixabay